Genetics, Development and Disease Biology Faculty


David Corey, Ph.D.

John M. Abrams, Ph.D.
Program Chair
Abrams Lab
Research Interests: Molecular genetics of cell death; genomic “dark matter”; p53 tumor suppressor function; 3D genome organization

Massimo Attanasio, M.D.
Assistant Professor
Research Interests: Human genetics of kidney diseases, cystic kidney diseases and fibrosis, glomerular diseases

Xiaoying Bai, M.D., Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Research Interests: Transcriptional regulation of hematopoietic stem cell fate

Linda Baker, M.D. 
Baker Lab&
Research Interests: Molecular mechanisms of normal genitourinary development and congenital birth defects

Laura Banaszynski, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Banaszynski Lab
Research Interests: Chromatin Biology, developmental gene regulation, histone variants, stem cells

James Brugarolas, M.D., Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Brugarolas Lab
Research Interests: Molecular mechanisms of cell growth proliferation control

Sandeep Burma, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Burma Lab
Research Interests: DNA double-strand break sensing, signaling and repair: from mechanistic understanding to glioblastoma therapy

Ezra Burstein, M.D.
Associate Professor
Burstein Lab
Research Interests: Molecular control of inflammatory responses in the intestine, inflammation and cancer progression, regulation of NF-kB activity, COMM.D. proteins

Michael Buszczak, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Buszczak Lab
Research Interests: Stem cell biology; niche signaling; chromatin; translational repression

Thomas Carroll, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Carroll Lab
Research Interests: Molecular mechanisms regulating kidney tubule formation and maintenance

Zhijian James Chen, Ph.D.
Chen Lab
Research Interests: NF-B signaling and the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway

Ondine Cleaver, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Cleaver Lab
Research Interests: Molecular mechanisms of cell fate specification during blood vessel development and organogenesis

Jonathan Cohen, Ph.D.
Hobbs/Cohen Lab
Research Interests: Genetics of quantitative traits; genetic determinants of plasma lipoprotein levels

James Collins, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Collins Lab 
Research Interests: Schistosomes are parasitic flatworms that cause significant disease and disability in more than 200 million of the world’s poorest people. Using a variety of functional genomic approaches we seek to understand fundamental aspects of schistosome biology, including the biology of somatic and reproductive stem cells.

Ralph J. DeBerardinis, M.D., Ph.D.
Associate Professor
DeBerardinis Lab
Research Interests: Regulation of metabolism during cell growth and tumorigenesis; integrating signal transduction with metabolic flux; understanding pediatric metabolic diseases

Michael Dellinger, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Dellinger Lab
Research Interests: The development of the lymphatic vasculature and human diseases caused by errors in the development of the lymphatic vasculature

Peter Douglas, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Douglas Lab
Research Interests: Molecular genetics of aging and stress response in blunt trauma, degenerative disease and cancer

Rene L. Galindo, M.D., Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Galindo Lab
Research Interests: Molecular mechanisms of pediatric sarcoma tumorigenesis and developmental skeletal muscle patterning

Christine Kim Garcia, M.D., Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Garcia Lab
Research Interests: Pulmonary medicine; human genetics; molecular genetics

Joseph Garcia, M.D., Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Research Interests: Integrative biological studies of hypoxia-inducible transcription factors; identification of genetic factors controlling the cardiovascular-respiratory response to hypoxia

Robert Gerard, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Gerard Lab
Research Interests: Specific research projects in my lab focus on in vivo tumor targeting using recombinant protein and adenoviral vector technology. Peptide ligands and monoclonal antibodies, as well as new technologies, are used as proven methods of targeting tumors for molecular imaging and therapy.

Jonathan M. Graff, M.D., Ph.D.
Graff Lab
Research Interests: Signaling pathways in development and cancer

Rana Gupta, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Gupta Lab
Research Interests: Transcriptional control of fat cell development and adipose tissue expansion in obesity; manipulating the adipose lineage as a therapeutic treatment for metabolic disease.

Robert E. Hammer, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Transforming growth factor beta signaling

F. Kent Hamra, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Hamra Lab
Research Interests: Sperm stem cell development; application of sperm stem cells in functional genomics; targeting sperm cell biology for fertility management and regenerative medicine

Mark Henkemeyer, Ph.D.
Henkemeyer Lab 
Research Interests: Molecular genetics of axon guidance and brain development; bidirectional tyrosine kinase signaling

Helen H. Hobbs, M.D.
Hobbs/Cohen Lab
Research Interests: Identification of genetic factors contributing to inter-individual differences in the concentration of lipoproteins in the blood

Gary Hon, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Hon Lab
Research Interests: Developing (epi)genomic/bioinformatic tools to assess and predict the functions of regulatory elements, epigenetic biomarkers of disease state, epigenetics in development and disease, global regulation of mammalian gene expression, non-coding genome function

Jenny Hsieh, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Hsieh Lab
Research Interests: Stem cell biology; neurogenesis and gliogenesis in CNS; chromatin remodeling; neurological diseases

Lily Huang, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Huang Lab
Research Interests: Cytokine receptor; signal transduction; hematopoiesis; structure-function analysis of protein; cancer

Huaqi Jiang, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
H. Jiang Lab
Research Interests: Regulation of tissue homeostasis and regeneration mediated by stem cells

Jin Jiang, Ph.D.
J. Jiang Lab
Research Interests: Signal-transduction pathways in development and human disease; genetic control of organ growth and patterning; tumor suppressor genes

Jane E. Johnson, Ph.D.
Johnson Lab
Research Interests: Development of the mammalian nervous system; transcriptional regulation of neural cell-type specification

Taekyung Kim, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Kim Lab
Research Interests: Genetic and epigenetic programs underlying brain development and function

Helmut Kramer, Ph.D.
Kramer Lab
Research Interests: Molecular genetics endosomal trafficking in Drosophila

W. Lee Kraus, Ph.D.
Kraus Lab
Research Interests: Cellular signaling, gene regulation, and epigenetic control in the chromatin environment of the nucleus; biological systems include: reproduction, cancer, inflammation, adipogenesis, stem cells, differentiation

Bing Li, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Li Lab
Research Interests: Chromatin regulation and eukaryotic transcription

Rueyling Lin, Ph.D.
Lin Lab
Research Interests: Cell-fate specification in Caenorhabditis elegans early development

Yi Liu, Ph.D.
Liu Lab
Research Interests: Molecular mechanisms of circadian biological clocks

Zhi-Ping Liu, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Liu Lab
Research Interests: Elucidate transcriptional regulatory mechanisms of genes involved in cardiovascular diseases and characterize the signaling pathways coupling these transcriptional programs to extracellular signals that trigger this disease

Lawrence Lum, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Lum Lab
Research Interests: How information from multiple signaling molecules, including Hh and Wg, integrate in developmental and disease-related contexts

David Corey, Ph.D.

Denise Marciano, M.D., Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Marciano Lab
Research Interests: Regulation of cell-cell adhesion during tubule and glomerular formation and in polycystic kidney disease

Joshua Mendell, M.D., Ph.D.
Mendell Lab
Research Interests: Regulation and function of mammalian miRNAs and other noncoding RNAs in normal physiology and disease

Sean Morrison, Ph.D.
Morrison Lab
Research Interests: Cancer stem cell biology; Melanoma cell proliferation and metastasis; Stem cell aging; Stem cell self-renewal

Saikat Mukhopadhyay, M.D., Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Mukhopadhyay Lab
Research Interests: Role of the primary cilia in normal development and cancer; functional proteomics in ciliary diseases; ciliary signaling pathways

Nikhil Munshi, M.D., Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Munshi Lab
Research Interests: Transcriptional mechanisms that orchestrate formation and function of the cardiac conduction system

Kathryn A. O'Donnell, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
O'Donnell-Mendell Lab
Research Interests: Identification and characterization of cancer-associated genes using transposon-mediated mutagenesis

Eric N. Olson, Ph.D.
Olson Lab
Research Interests: Transcriptional control of cell differentiation; muscle development

Hesham Sadek, M.D., Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Sadek Lab
Research Interests: Metabolic profiling of stem cells

Jay Schneider, M.D., Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Research Interests: Stem Cells, Cancer, microRNAs, small molecules

Jerry W. Shay, Ph.D.
Shay Lab
Research Interests: Defining the molecular mechanisms of human cell immortalization; telomeres and telomerase in aging and cancer

Stephen Skapek, M.D.
Skapek Lab
Research Interests: Tumor suppressor gene function; Angiogenesis; Skeletal muscle differentiation; Oncogene-induced senescence

William J. Snell, Ph.D.
Snell Lab
Research Interests: Understanding the mechanisms of cell-cell adhesion induced signaling and cell-cell fusion during fertilization

Zhigao Wang, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Research Interests: Molecular mechanisms of necrotic cell death; development of chemical inhibitors and activators of necrotic cell death

Tom Wilkie, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Wilkie Lab
Research Interests: G-protein signaling during mouse development, energy homeostasis, and feeding behavior

Carol Wise, Ph.D.
Wise Lab
Research Interests: Genetics of pediatric musculoskeletal and autoinflammatory diseases

Woodring E. Wright, M.D., Ph.D.
Wright Lab
Research Interests: The role of telomeres and telomerase in cellular senescence and cancer; developing normal immortalized cells for therapeutic uses

Jiang Wu, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Wu Lab
Research Interests: Chromatin regulation of neural development; neural stem cell differentiation; activity dependent gene expression

Chao Xing, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Xing Lab
Research Interests: Statistical genetics, genetic epidemiology, bioinformatics, gene mapping for complex traits

Jian Xu, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Xu Lab
Research Interests: Epigenetic and genetic basis of disease-associated genes and gene networks in blood stem cell development and disorders, focusing on both single gene and genomic levels

Chun-Li Zhang, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Zhang Lab
Research Interests: Nuclear receptor signaling and adult neural stem cells

Hao Zhu, M.D.
Assistant Professor
Zhu Lab
Research Interests: Genetic and cellular mechanisms of organ regeneration and dysregulation of these mechanisms in liver cancer

Andrew R. Zinn, M.D., Ph.D.
Zinn Lab
Research Interests: Genetic disorders of human growth and reproduction; Turner syndrome; infertility; obesity

Associate Members

These faculty members do not accept graduate students. They participate in teaching, co-mentoring, exam and dissertation committees, and all other program responsibilities.

Rhonda Bassel-Duby, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Genetic mechanisms of muscle development, growth, disease and regeneration

Raymond J. MacDonald, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Transcriptional control of organogenesis

Stuart Ravnik, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Research Interests: Molecular control of germ-cell development and meiosis

Scott Robertson, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Research Interests: Lineage commitment from mesoderm; initiation of hematopoietic development